Global Network


Jan 27, 2014

CITIZEN to make its debut at the MILAN DESIGN WEEK, one of the world’s largest design festivals.
— April 8 (Tue) to 13 (Sun), 2014 in Triennale di Milano, Italy —

As a part of its global branding activities, CITIZEN will participate in the MILAN DESIGN WEEK. This global design festival offers an exciting opportunity where we can make people around the world more aware of the CITIZEN brand promise — creating the future of watches.

Since the company’s founding in 1930, CITIZEN has focused on pushing the boundaries of watchmaking so that more people around the world can wear superior watches. One pivotal technological breakthrough in 1976, based on this culture of innovation, was the development of a revolutionary light-powered technology called Eco-Drive, which uses electrical power converted from virtually any light source to drive a watch. Eco-Drive completely eliminated the need to replace batteries and democratized the joy of wearing and using CITIZEN watches, representing the essential nature of our corporate spirit.

Transforming “light” to “time to explore a new “future” together. Eco-Drive evolves the “Time x Light x Future” concept.

Appearing at the MILAN DESIGN WEEK allows CITIZEN an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of our brand. This world-class design festival attracts over 320,000 visitors from more than 160 countries around the world. They will have an opportunity to experience the CITIZEN brand spirit, which relentlessly forges the future through the exploration of the relationship between light and time.

The design of the “installation art” was developed by Tsuyoshi Tane, a renowned Paris-based architect, together with CITIZEN’s in-house design team. Celebrating the theme of “light is time,” the installation is comprised of the main plates — the main movement plate that forms the foundation of all watches. The 80,000 main plates suspended in air create an inspirational space for our exhibition at Triennale di Milano. Among other highlights, a pocket watch from the 1920s and the latest model will also be on exhibit. This rare timepiece will show visitors a glimpse of the origin of CITIZEN. Combined with our latest lineup and the art installation, the entire exhibit will reinforce our world-class brand and hopefully allow visitors to better understand allure of Citizen Design and our watch-making craftsmanship are all about.

Light is Time

Time is Light, Light is Time

"Time is light and light is time." We found inspiration from Citizen's watch-making and finally hit on this simplest of concepts: "Light is Time." Light was born at the instant of the Big Bang, the universe's beginning. From beyond the horizon, the rising Sun bathes the Earth in light, causing moving shadows to shift, the seasons to change and the waxing and waning of the Moon. When humanity noticed these things, we unknowingly created the concept of time.

Citizen came to take on the challenge of making watches that "change light into time" in accordance with the company's philosophy of "watches for all citizens." "Light is Time" is an installation of light and time. At the Triennale di Milano exhibition hall, we will present a magnificent space made from 80,000 ‘main plates’ – the most basic part of a watch. There, we envision a space orchestration where light will fill the space, conveying, through sound and light, a sense of light and time as yet unexperienced by humanity. In addition to exhibiting everything from pocket watches (where Citizen first got started) to the latest satellite-synchronized watch at the venue, we hope attendees will experience Citizen's mission in search of an answer to the question:” What makes a watch”

Time is light. If there were no light, then there would be no time. In the 20th century mankind digitized time, measured it and continued to compress it, until eventually we forgot about its relationship with light. Without light we never would have had the wonders of the cosmos, the rich resources of the Earth or the joy of life.
"Light is Time"—the act of beckoning light's return to time—is our attempt at "21st-century light."

Tsuyoshi Tane (DGT)


DGT is an international architecture practice founded in Paris in 2006, and is directed by Dan Dorell, Lina Ghotmeh and Tsuyoshi Tane. The winner of the international competition to design the Estonian National Museum, (to be completed in 2016), DGT has numerous ongoing projects globally, gaining the practice much attention worldwide. In 2008 U.K.-based ICON Magazine selected DGT among the "20 essential young architects.” In 2012 DGT was a shortlisted finalist for the competition to design the New National Stadium of Japan. DGT has won numerous other prizes including the young architects prize from the French Ministry of Culture (2008), the Architects Association of Milan (2008), and the Red Dot Award (2013).

Exhibition Overview

Title CITIZEN Milan Design Week 2014
Theme Light is Time
Public April 8 (Tue.) to 13 (Sun.), 2014 (6 days in total)
※April 8 (Tue.), 10:30 — 24:00
after April 9 (wed) 10:30 — 22:00
Press review April 7 (Mon.), 11:00 — 18:00
Opening reception April 7 (Mon.) 16:00 — 18:00
Venue Curva A, Zone GF, La Triennale di Milano, Italy
Exhibition space Approx. 445㎡
Creative direction Citizen Brand Head Office, CITIZEN WATCH CO.,LTD
Lighting / Sound Direction Yutaka Endo (LUFTZUG)